My source equivocated on whether they liked it, leaning more toward the not. I however loved it and I’ll tell you why.
Future echoes. Foreshadowing of evil.
It has long been legend in the Whoniverse that 12 is (will be? was?) EEEEEEEEvil. Leaving plenty of room for speculation that 13’s story will be a redemption story, of course, but in order for any of that to happen, there has to be a slide, and it’s starting to look like the slide begins now. Matt Smith, I expect, will have quite the tumultuous set of adventures. Because although The Doctor has always been crazy, I expect we’ll now see him go quite, quite mad.
Ten’s little taste of that was, for me, delightfully terrifying. He is the victor! He is THE Time Lord! Time will obey! The wild-eyed seizure of power, hair flying, teeth baring – wholly holy-shit terrifying.
This time, he got instant payback in the form of Brooke’s suicide. Immediate remorse and self-flagellation, with premonition of impending death and attempt to flee therefrom. Regardless the manner of his coming death, cue now the struggle The Doctor must have with himself over what to do with Space and Time. Will he obey the old laws? Will he make new ones? Will he make it up as he goes along? How does The Master fit into all this? Will they finally be brothers in 3vil? Or will they still rival each other?
(Besides which, I think the Cloister Bell means that he’s gone and broken Time somehow and there’s more fallout coming.)
The question again arises – to have a companion or not? They always get killed or leave or get lost one way or another, but as Donna pointed out so rightly, and as Brooke echoed, he needs someone to stop him. Right now he has no one, and look what happened.
I love this Big Story stuff, with all the inner conflict!
What I didn’t love – webpages for flashbacks. Neh.